R.I.P. Leslie Nielsen (1926-2010)

Posted: November 30, 2010 in Celebrities, Movies
Tags: , , , , ,

Since this blog is about guys and their hobbies, I think it’s entirely appropriate for this blog’s first post to pay tribute to the passing of one of the icons of “Guy Movies,” Leslie Nielsen.

According to imdb.com, Nielsen passed away as a result of pneumonia, which he contracted while being treated for a staph infection.  Though Nielsen’s career was long and varied before, he would become known for his various appearances in screwball comedies like Airplane! and The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad. His ability to deliver insane and outrageous lines while maintaining a completely deadpan demeanor provided him with a “second life” in his acting career from the 1980’s on.  His turn as Dr. Rumack on Airplane! led to his most notorious character, Lt. Frank Drebin of Police Squad!

Just about any guy you know will know at least one quote from The Naked Gun, but few people have seen the show that the movie is based on.  Police Squad! (In Color) ran for six episodes in 1982.  Though the show was expected to be a huge success at its premiere, ratings quickly plummeted.  In an interview on the DVD set, Nielsen claimed the reason for Police Squad!‘s failure was the fact that viewers actually had to watch the show carefully to absorb all the sight gags and catch the occasionally subtle double entendres and innuendoes, whereas the average TV viewer usually just turns on the TV and pays little attention to it.  This would certainly explain the success of the Naked Gun films, as cinema audiences are generally more of a captive audience with little else to distract them from the screen.

In honor of the man who made us all laugh, the first recommendation I will make on this blog is to go over to Amazon.com and get your copy of Police Squad! The Complete Series. For those who like to laugh, this is an easy choice for a very affordable price.

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